Sunday, June 15, 2008

Real World Father's Day

My father is my Knight in Shining Armor, and I am the princess who needs to be saved. I am a Daddy's Girl. And I have no shame in that. I am completely clear on the fact that Daddy is human. I also whole-heartedly believe in his super-hero status.

I am an only child. I am an only daughter. My father was a mere 25 years of age, and a very young 25, when I came into the world, and though he had a lot to learn as a husband, he seems to have taken to fatherhood quite naturally.

In our first picture together, he wears a yellow hospital gown, and holds a barely-5-pounds-me in his hands. I look tiny but safe. He gazes in awe at this tiny creature for whom he is now wholely responsible.

My mother will cry in heaving sobs when she tells of how she didn't get to meet me for three entire days after I was born. The nurses just kept neglecting to wheel her down to the NICU. But my father talked to me, held me and began to understand some of what it takes to be a father.

In the 27 (nearly 28) years that followed that photo, we've had our ups and downs, our fights and battles, most of them caused by the fact that we're incredibly alike in personality. Put to incredibly stubborn, defensive, unbelieving people and a room together, and you get two people who can't make a decision and who must consult resources before believing anything anyone says. It's fun.

But the truth is that my father has taught me what to look for in a future husband and what to expect from men in the world around me. With no qualms, I can say that my father has taught me about loyalty, honor and courage, because he has all three in immense quantity.

I love my Daddy, and I realize how incredibly lucky I am to be a girl who knows her father's flaws and can still respect him as a father and as a man.

So, here's to fathers being good to their daughters, because it's true what John Mayer says, daughters give love in response to how well their fathers can love them.

Happy Fathers' Day to all of the wonderful fathers out there, but especially to mine :).

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